The green belt in Zhangjiakou, Hebei province which circles Beijing and Tianjin is the final barrier between the two cities and sandy doom. After 40 years of service of protecting the cities from sandstorms, the green belt is shrinking as its poplar trees die off, China View reports.
Tian Liang, a local villager, told reporters:
Many trees are dying because of shriking underground water level. We all want to replace the dying trees but the forest laws forbid us from cutting down any trees even if they are dead.
The green belt has suffered from desertification due to its windy and dry climate. Efforts were made to expand the belt in the 1950s in the hopes of improving the local ecology but most trees planted at that time are slowly reaching their end.
[By Sam Canpadee // Image credit: @publicdomainphotos]